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PhD Position in Sustainability Assessment of CO2 Capture and Use in Value-added Construction Products in Zürich

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100%, Zurich, fixed-term

The gathers scientists, engineers and architects from various backgrounds who aim to ground sustainability in all disciplines involved in the built environment. The objective is to identify the relevant parameters that influence the environmental impacts of buildings at international, national and regional levels to implement sustainable practices throughout the development of innovative strategies adapted to each stakeholder. This involves interdisciplinary works dealing, among others, with Life Cycle Assessment, urban metabolism, and material science.

Project background

Carbon4Minerals is a research project that aims to develop technologies to capture CO2 from industrial flue gases of processes producing construction products and use the captured CO2 through mineralisation to produce low-carbon material intermediates and construction products, which can replace CO2-intensive materials. The project is developed by a consortium of European research institutes, universities, and industry partners. ETH is responsible for assessing the overall sustainability of the new technologies considering environmental, techno-economic, territorial, and social impacts, based on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Techno-Economic Assessment (TEA). It is a three-year research project. More information about this project can be found .

Job description

Your tasks will include:

  • Assess sustainability indicators for the Carbon Capture and Use (CCU) technologies developed in the project, focusing on economic, social, and territorial aspects
  • Develop a multi-criteria analysis framework to assess the sustainability of CCU technologies, including environmental, economic, social, and territorial aspects, and compare these technologies with benchmarks considering different scenarios
  • Collect, organise, and analyse data on the processes and products developed within the project in collaboration with industry partners
  • Collaborate with other researchers in the group and with project partners (inter- and transdisciplinary work)
  • Disseminate research findings through peer-reviewed publications and other dissemination events such as research symposia, conferences, and seminars
Your profile

Essential experience, skills, and characteristics:

  • Masters in Ecological or Environmental Economics, Industrial Ecology, or related fields
  • Experience in Techno-Economic Assessment (TEA) or economic feasibility studies of innovative technologies with improved environmental performance compared to baseline
  • Experience in Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) methods and tools
  • Knowledge of Circular Economy
  • Systemic and holistic view
  • Good organisational skills with the ability to manage multiple tasks and priorities
  • Good data analysis and data management skills
  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to work in interdisciplinary and diverse teams
  • Fluency in spoken and written English

Desirable criteria:

  • Knowledge of Carbon Capture and Use technologies
  • Knowledge of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Material Flow Analysis (MFA)
  • Knowledge of Social Life Cycle Assessment or similar methods
  • Familiarity with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) tools
Your workplace
Your workplace

We offer

This is a full-time position, . The position is based in Zürich, with occasional travel to the European countries where the Carbon4Minerals project partners are located. The working language is English, but the ETH campus is located in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. We offer a competitive salary, a stimulating and collaborative research environment, and various opportunities for professional development.

We value diversity
In line with , ETH Zurich encourages an inclusive culture. We promote equality of opportunity, value diversity and nurture a working and learning environment in which the rights and dignity of all our staff and students are respected. Visit our to find out how we ensure a fair and open environment that allows everyone to grow and flourish.
Curious? So are we.

Applications are only accepted through the online portal and should contain the following documents (make sure your last name is on all the documents and in the file name):

  • Cover letter that describes your motivation, experience, and how you can contribute to the proposed research project (max. 1 page)
  • A full CV, including a list of publications
  • Name, phone number, email address, and contact details of two referees

All files must be submitted in PDF format. Anything that is not presented as a PDF will not be considered. Any application that is not complete will not be considered.

Application deadline: we will start the interviews on November 15 and consider all applications submitted by then. The job is planned to start at the beginning of February 2024 or upon agreement after negotiation.

Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered.

For further questions regarding the position, please get in touch with Dr. Fernanda Belizario-Silva via email at (no applications). More information about the Institute of Construction & Infrastructure Management (IBI) within the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering (D-BAUG) is on our .

About ETH Zürich
ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.

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